Modern Medicine: Advanced Radiation Therapy - WMBB News 13 - The Panhandle's News Leader

Modern Medicine: Advanced Radiation Therapy

Posted: Updated:
  • What's Going AroundMore>>

  • What's Going Around - August 20th

    What's Going Around - August 20th

    Wednesday, August 20 2014 1:08 PM EDT2014-08-20 17:08:58 GMT
    We all dread getting that sore feeling in our throat. It can be one of the first signs we're getting sick.More >>
    We all dread getting that sore feeling in our throat. It can be one of the first signs we're getting sick.More >>
  • What's Going Around - August 12th

    What's Going Around - August 12th

    Wednesday, August 13 2014 12:02 AM EDT2014-08-13 04:02:37 GMT
    There's a stomach illness going around, and there are some symptoms you need to be aware of to keep your family healthy.More >>
    There's a stomach illness going around, and there are some symptoms you need to be aware of to keep your family healthy.More >>
Bay County, Fla. -

A treatment originally designed for head and neck cancer is now showing promise in breast cancer patients.  That's according to Dr. Hasan Murshed from Hope Radiation Cancer Center.

Patient Becky Valakis was diagnosed with breast cancer in July of 2012.  She had surgery to remove a lump and then went through radiation at the Hope Radiation Cancer Center.

"We have a machine that can do what we call Intensity Modulated Radiation Treatment technique.  With the new technique, I don't see the skin reactions any more.  They don't require high doses of pain medication, and they don't need a break from radiation treatment," explains Dr. Murshed.  

This is also known as IMRT and helps minimize side effects by focusing the radiation directly on the tumor site.  This spares other structures, like the heart and lungs, from being exposed to high doses of radiation. 

Valakis says it was an easy process and not painful.  Dr. Murshed says the Hope Radiation Cancer Center is also designed with special artwork and paint colors to promote a healing environment.

He says, "It has been proven to reduce the stress and anxiety in the patient. They feel more relaxed, and that helps them recover faster."

"They fixed me.  They fixed me very well," says Valakis with a smile.  She has completed her radiation treatment and feels great.  

Valakis encourages other women to do their routine breast cancer screenings because her cancer was found during an annual mammogram.